Inside these posts: Mortgage modifications

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Treasury backs HAMP amid GOP calls to kill it

The Obama administration vigorously defended its Home Affordable Modification Program Wednesday, which  faces sharp criticism by Republican lawmakers who want it axed.

Repeatedly saying that the housing market remains fragile,  Treasury Department officials touted the fact that while the 2-year-old program is not meeting its initially much-publicized — and now unrealistic — goal of saving 3 million to 4 million families from foreclosure, the 25,000 to 30,000 families each month who are receiving permanent loan modifications is cause for it to continue.   Get the full story »

Less progress on mortgage mods in Chicago

The number of delinquent Chicago-area borrowers in permanent mortgage loan modifications fell in December for the first time since the government started its program to help troubled consumers keep their homes.

According to Treasury Department data released Monday, 27,121 local borrowers have received permanent loan modifications since the Home Affordable Modification Program began 21 months ago, compared with 27,176 in November. Get the full story »

New effort to make mortgage modifications easier

The Obama administration Tuesday stepped up efforts to make it easier for struggling homeowners to renegotiate their mortgages, though it could be more than a year before such efforts pay off.

The way mortgage servicers — firms that collect loan payments on behalf of a loan’s owner — are paid is “broken and should be fixed,” Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan said in a joint statement. Get the full story »

HAMP falls short in new report on mortgage mods

The Obama administration’s Home Affordable Modification Program is on target to prevent only 700,000 foreclosures, not the 4 million the Treasury Department originally estimated when it introduced the program, according to a Congressional Oversight Panel report issued Tuesday. Get the full story »

Pace of mortgage mods continues to slow

The number of Chicago-area homeowners who received permanent mortgage modifications rose last month, topping 25,000, but the pace at which consumers are being added to that group has slowed dramatically.

The government’s monthly accounting of its Home Affordable Modification Program showed that in the Chicago area, the 25,001 mortgages that received permanently lower payment terms was a 3.1 percent increase from September. On a percentage basis, that’s the smallest monthly gain of the year, and a dramatic drop from the high double-digit gains recorded earlier this year. Get the full story »

BofA in ‘hand-to-hand combat’ over mortgages

A quick settlement of the 50-state probe of the U.S. mortgage foreclosure crisis would be the best solution for all involved, the chief executive of Bank of America said on Tuesday.

The call for a settlement by Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan was followed by comments from Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller, who told a Senate hearing that a settlement with lenders was still months off.

“We’re thinking in terms of months rather than a year or longer but it depends really on how far we get,” said Miller, who is heading up a probe by all 50 state attorneys general. Get the full story »

More unlicensed mortgage firms exposed

Eleven Chicago-area companies were cited Thursday by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation for offering mortgage loan modifications to consumers without a license.

The companies ordered to stop offering loan medications and pay a fine of $25,000 each were Opportunity Consultants; Carrey Services; American Accurate Services; Gamez & Associates Ltd.; Juan Hernandez; Home Loan Modification; Homeowner’s Advocates Centers; Imperium Realty Group; Mortgage Mitigators; Mi Familia; and Loan Rescue Corp. Get the full story »

Chicago trial HAMP loans down in September

The number of Chicago-area homeowners in trial mortgage modifications continued to fall in September, while the number of people who have received permanently lower payment terms rose 4 percent in the month, the Treasury Department said Monday.

The government’s September accounting of its Home Affordable Modification Program also showed that borrowers in permanent modifications are having trouble keeping their loans current, even after the payments are reduced. Get the full story »

Mortgage study says recent modifications best

Homeowners with more recent loan modifications are less likely to default on their payments, a report Friday showed. Thirty percent of modifications made in 2009 were seriously delinquent or in the foreclosure process, according to a second-quarter study released by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Office of Thrift Supervision.

More words of warning on mortgage modifications

It’s time for some more words of warning on how good intentions can mess up your credit report or credit score as you try to get mortgage payments you can handle.

Since writing about how mortgage modifications can tarnish your credit score, I have heard from many well intentioned people who ended up with a credit disaster as they tried to do the right thing with their mortgages.